Meeting leadership needs and addressing succession issues


A multinational financial institution


A large financial institution, operating across 10 countries with 40,000+ employees.


This bank had a newly appointed CEO, who was tasked with the challenge of taking the company out of a bad situation in a termed-tenure (the previous Board and CEO were fired). Hence, the CEO’s focus was two-fold: (1) A major restructuring effort, which required onboarding new people and (2) Identifying a successor. At the same time, the company had brought in a highly public figure as a potential successor but the CEO had qualms whether or not he was the right person. KDVI was called in to conduct a leadership development workshop, whose goals were to identify leadership needs as well as to serve as a testing ground for the potential successors. KDVI’s involvement with this bank lasted 3 years.


Multi-year modular intervention with senior executives involving 2 KDVI faculty members.


KDVI proposed a leadership workshop with 25 senior executives, divided into three groups. The intervention was delivered using the same format as with other banks, with a large group intervention of 50 people in the last year.

Module I—The first workshop lasted 2.5 days. KDVI used the Leadership Audit (interviews with TMT to provide a presentation on culture and challenges in present and going forward), Self Portraits and group feedback process using KDVI’s own proprietary instruments (GELI and  PA).

Module 2—The second workshop, which lasted 2.5 days, involved a debrief of personal action plans and discussion of High Performance Teams using LAQTM feedback. This was followed by a discussion on culture, high performance organisations, and a group exercise focused on strategic issues. The teams then committed to a new action plan for organizational culture and change that was presented to the Board.

For each intervention, KDVI also put together extensive reports on each participant to the Board/CEO (based on group feedback, group interactions and letters of intent) including general concerns for the bank, capabilities of individuals, and specific recommendations from KDVI for both the bank and the individual leader.


The intervention with this bank represented a total treatment. Very detailed profiles were presented to CEO, who was eager to get a good sense of the people he was working with. This knowledge in turn resulted in better leadership placement, where leaders were moved to positions of strength. Another enormous impact on the organisation was the creation of an internal university, to serve as a testing and training ground for leadership potential. Beyond the workshops, KDVI was also invited to the bank’s first and second organisational summits with the Top 100, with Manfred Kets de Vries as one of the speakers and designer of the summit. Interventions with executive board members were also conducted in the form of workshops to address organisational issues and strategies.